Belfast Telegraph

Vatican recall for top priest in US child porn probe

By Staff Reporter

A high-ranking Vatican priest in the Holy See's Washington embassy has been recalled after US prosecutors asked for him to be charged in an investigation into images of child abuse.

The Vatican declined to identify the diplomat, but said he was back in Vatican City and that Vatican prosecutors had launched their own probe. The US State Department said it asked the Vatican to lift the official's diplomatic immunity on August 21, but the request was denied.

The Vatican said the State Department had notified officials on August 21 of a "possible violation of laws relating to child pornography images" by one of its diplomats in Washington.

A US official said the priest was a senior member of the Vatican embassy staff.

The Vatican said recalling the priest was consistent with diplomatic practice of sovereign states. In declining to identify him, officials said the case was subject to confidentiality while still under investigation.

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